har·​mon·​i·​ca | \ här-ˈmä-ni-kə How to pronounce harmonica (audio) \

Definition of harmonica

2 : a small rectangular wind instrument with free reeds recessed in air slots from which tones are sounded by exhaling and inhaling

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Other Words from harmonica

harmonicist \ här-​ˈmä-​nə-​sist How to pronounce harmonicist (audio) \ noun

Examples of harmonica in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Using a wooden implement called a box bow, Mr. Hiller coaxes out of the strings a pulsing harmonica sound. Kerry O’brien, New York Times, "A Composer and Her (Very) Long String Instrument," 1 May 2020 Recorder: This wind instrument involves blowing like the harmonica as well as moving your fingers around holes to create notes. oregonlive, "Find easy-to-learn musical instruments and classes online to bring harmony to stay-home time," 13 Apr. 2020 Tyler, holding a harmonica, and Perry, with an acoustic guitar, eased into chairs set on a platform that jutted out from center stage. Hilary Hughes, Billboard, "Rat Pack to Fame Monster: The Rise, Fall and Lucrative Rebirth of the Las Vegas Residency," 28 Jan. 2020 Blues singer and harmonica player Charlie Musselwhite is 76. BostonGlobe.com, "This day in history," 30 Jan. 2020 To celebrate the occasion, the Natchez Democrat reported that lead singer Travis McCready and guitarist Drew Smithers played a guitar and harmonica from the air. USA TODAY, "Sesame Street joins SeaWorld, sunken WW II ship found, presidential yacht: News from around our 50 states," 22 Oct. 2019 Instead, Dylan stripped his band down to a trio during the 1967 sessions, with himself on guitar and harmonica backed by ace Nashville session pros Charlie McCoy on bass and Kenneth Buttrey on drums. Randy Lewis, Los Angeles Times, "When Bobby met Johnny: New Bob Dylan ‘Bootleg Series’ collection stars Johnny Cash," 19 Sep. 2019 For the most part, though, Hancock spent his time reading, learning the harmonica, and conducting a series of scientific experiments, including the successful confirmation of Rockall’s height (0.85 meters lower than previously thought). Greg Noone, Smithsonian, "This Tiny, Uninhabitable Islet in the North Atlantic Has Been Attracting Fishermen and Adventurers for Decades," 30 Oct. 2019 Lyrics, harmonica, vocals: Peter Bode Guitar, bass, drums: Steve Medellin This song takes a serious tone, in the first verse condemning those who degraded our river, while highlighting the effects that irresponsible practice had on Clevelanders. Laura Johnston, cleveland.com, "Two songs to commemorate Cuyahoga River’s 50 years reborn," 12 Aug. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'harmonica.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of harmonica

1762, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for harmonica

Italian armonica, feminine of armonico harmonious

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Time Traveler for harmonica

Time Traveler

The first known use of harmonica was in 1762

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Statistics for harmonica

Last Updated

7 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Harmonica.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/harmonica. Accessed 29 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for harmonica


How to pronounce harmonica (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of harmonica

: a small musical instrument that is played with your mouth


har·​mon·​i·​ca | \ här-ˈmä-ni-kə How to pronounce harmonica (audio) \

Kids Definition of harmonica

: a small musical instrument held in the hand and played by the mouth

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More from Merriam-Webster on harmonica

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with harmonica

Spanish Central: Translation of harmonica

Nglish: Translation of harmonica for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of harmonica for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about harmonica

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